Summertime Snacking

I don't know what it was about the end of this school year, but everyone in my school looked a little worse for wear. I think the rainy spring and slow build up to summer dampened everyone's spirits and had us feeling like the end would never come. But it did! We've had some beautiful weather this first week off. Maybe this gorgeous weather has been the world's way of rewarding us for hanging in there?
Penny had no problem adjusting to summer
I have been so busy, I've only begun to realize it's vacation. Because I'm weird, I spent the last week of school doing things around the house and yard to help me get ready for vacation. This included single-handedly bringing home an enormous teak patio set from Ocean State Job Lot.

Have I told you about my mild obsession with Ocean State Job Lot? I have had the best luck finding all sorts of stuff there: Speedo bathingsuits, lifejackets, Polar seltzer, and now my amazing new patio set. Teak is stupidly expensive, did you know that? But not this teak table. I even had Dan inspect it and he, the ultimate wood snob, approved.

Now that we have a place to eat, I've been pressuring Dan to grill almost every night This week alone we've done barbecue chicken thighs (so much better than chicken breasts), hamburgers with all the fixings, and pizza. Have you ever eaten a grilled pizza? We've just about got it down to a science.

Homemade pizza dough is not hard. You can do this. I've made and eaten a lot of pizza dough in my life, and hands down this is the best pizza crust recipe. My mom has stopped buying pizza dough from the Italian bakery in town, because that recipe is just so much better. It doesn't require bread flour, you can make it by hand, and it is so forgiving.
This is what the dough looks like after mixing and kneading. Allow to rise until doubled in size.

Wrinkles are pretty; don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

What I've learned is that you really can't stretch this dough too thin. Aim for two, twelve inch pizzas. You'll get a nice, doughy but crispy crust, and a thin, but not too thin, center. Crispy and chewy.

I didn't even use my rolling pin on this dough. I divided the risen dough (on a heavily floured counter) in two, and used my hands to gently shape the dough into rough circles. 

If you don't have a pizza peel, you can shape the dough on a floured cutting board, a flat cookie sheet- whatever is big and flat will work.

Turn your grill up high, oil your grates, and slide those crusts on. Dan likes to grill both sides, so after the first side has cooked, he flips the crust over. While the second side is cooking, he lowers the heat a bit and we assemble our pizzas, right on the grill.
Our best pizzas yet!

You could go about this another way, I'm sure. I bet you could use a lower cooking temperature and not have to flip the crust before assembling. I'm not the grill master in this house, so I try not to interfere too much.

I'm sure there'll be many more backyard adventures this summer, so check back soon for updates. Happy summer!


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